Pointing North after so many years!

January 2023

When we finished exploring Ushuaia and reveling in the glory of the milestone, it was time to point the truck North and continue to explore this continent.  Our first stop was back at the shop where we had the leaf springs made.  Antonio was adamant that we come back to have everything checked and retorqued.  Such a thoughtful and kind man.

While there, Geneva went in for a haircut.  And Mike waited at the drum-heater keeping his toes warm and surfing the speedy internet!  Then we grabbed some delicious Arabic food  for a feast in the camper.

Now we are ready to drive north east into Chile for some off road exploring.  This dry, very windblown area has some surprise wildlife.  During our daily drives we saw nandu, guanaco, foxes and hairy armadillo.   These are all quite fast creatures, so capturing a photo was a little tricky.   But here is what I have for you, can you identify each of them?

If you guessed that each of those is a photo of a guanaco, you are correct.  These are native camelid’s that are slightly smaller than an alpaca or llama.  They run in herds, generally.  And they are all over the highways, side roads, fields, pastures, etc.  Including many of them that did not move out of the roadway fast enough to avoid a speeding semi-truck.

We simply never grabbed our phones fast enough to capture an image of the other animals, yet.   However, we did see these Andean foxes (called zorro’s) on display in a tourist center.  I hope this will do for now.

This section of dusty landscape was finally leading us down dirt roads towards another animal that lives in this region.  This time we were going to a small enclave of King Penguins!  This group of penguins showed up in this little canal in the early 2000’s.  Initially it was seen as a pleasant and newsworthy surprise so it received great publicity.  But as news spread, the impact of humans was seen.  People would drive out there in their cars for selfies, penguin-hugs and general harassment of this wildlife.  One person actually put a penguin in their car and tried to take it home.   This human misbehavior made the population dwindle and private reserve was quickly developed.  This well-managed facility is designed to allow visitors to see the penguins without disrupting their daily lives.  We spent nearly an hour watching from different angles behind a protective wall, and taking photos and videos to share with you.  The rangers were informative and patient as we oohed and aahed over these beautiful birds.


You can learn more about the reserve if you click on this link.     https://www.pinguinorey.com/en/


After our time with the penguins, it was getting late (but not dark because of our global location). We had seen a grim reminder on the way in, regarding the danger of the curvy, narrow, dirt roads.  This car had clearly been traveling too fast to correct on the sharp turn, and ended up off the road in a deep canyon.   We can only hope that all passengers survived and extrication was simple.  But being very far from medical care, these situations always remind us to be cautious and mindful of our driving.


We decided to set up a camp on a hill near the beach.  From there we had an amazing view of the ocean,  the hills, the grazing guanaco and the wide open skies of Tierra del Fuego.  Preparing dinner with these views and reflecting on our recent days at the tip of the continent reminded us of how lucky we are to be enjoying this journey. Thank you for following us.



3 thoughts on “Pointing North after so many years!

  1. Thank me? Oh no, thank you! We love to be carried along on this fantastic journey. Literally, just got a call today that my van arrived after 11 months of waiting. So that I too may start a journey of my own. See you on the road one day…

  2. Thanks for the update. They say the penguins taste just like chicken but a little queasy. We are taking off for 2 months headed for Alaska. Keep moving.

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